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Today in history: May 12

/ Source: The Associated Press

Today is Friday, May 12, the 132nd day of 2006. There are 233 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
On May 12, 1943, during World War II, Axis forces in North Africa surrendered.

On this date:
In 1870, Manitoba entered Confederation as a Canadian province.

In 1932, the body of the kidnapped son of Charles and Anne Lindbergh was found in a wooded area of Hopewell, N.J.

In 1933, the Federal Emergency Relief Administration and the Agricultural Adjustment Administration were established to provide help for the needy and farmers.

In 1937, Britain’s King George VI was crowned at Westminster Abbey.

In 1949, the Soviet Union announced an end to the Berlin Blockade.

In 1965, West Germany and Israel exchanged letters establishing diplomatic relations.

In 1970, the Senate voted unanimously to confirm Harry A. Blackmun as a Supreme Court justice.

In 1975, the White House announced the new Cambodian government had seized an American merchant ship, the Mayaguez, in international waters.

In 1982, in Fatima, Portugal, security guards overpowered a Spanish priest armed with a bayonet who was trying to reach Pope John Paul II.

In 1985, Illinois Gov. James Thompson commuted the sentence of Gary Dotson, who’d served six years in prison for a rape that the alleged victim later said never happened.

Ten years ago: Authorities in Florida called off the search for possible survivors from the crash of ValuJet Flight 592, a day after the jetliner nose-dived into the Everglades with 110 people on board.

Five years ago: Singer Perry Como died in Jupiter Inlet Colony, Fla., at age 88.

One year ago: The Foreign Relations Committee voted 10-8 along party lines to advance John Bolton’s nomination to be U.N. ambassador without the customary recommendation that the Senate approve it. Microsoft officially unveiled its Xbox 360, a video game console boasting improved graphics over its predecessor.

Today’s Birthdays: Baseball Hall-of-Famer Yogi Berra is 81. Critic John Simon is 81. Composer Burt Bacharach is 78. Talk show host Tom Snyder is 70. Comedian George Carlin is 69. Actress Millie Perkins is 68. Rhythm-and-blues singer Jayotis Washington is 65. Country singer Billy Swan is 64. Actress Linda Dano is 63. Musician Ian McLagan is 61. Actress Lindsay Crouse is 58. Singer-musician Steve Winwood is 58. Actor Gabriel Byrne is 56. Actor Bruce Boxleitner is 56. Singer Billy Squier is 56. Country singer Kix Brooks is 51. Actress Kim Greist is 48. Actor Ving Rhames is 45. Rock musician Billy Duffy is 45. Actor Emilio Estevez is 44. Actress Vanessa L. Williams (“Soul Food”) is 43. Country musician Eddie Kilgallon is 41. Actor Stephen Baldwin is 40. Actress Kim Fields is 37. Actress Samantha Mathis is 36. Actress Jamie Luner is 35. Actor Christian Campbell is 34. Actor Mackenzie Astin is 33. Actor Jason Biggs is 28. Actress Emily VanCamp is 20. Actor Malcolm David Kelley (“Lost”) is 14. Actors Sullivan and Sawyer Sweeten (“Everybody Loves Raymond”) are 11.

Thought for Today: “Dissent is not sacred; the right of dissent is.” — Thurman Arnold, American lawyer (1891-1969).